Thursday, August 30, 2012

Tomato Basil Soup


    • 5 cloves
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 2 tablespoons butter
    • 1 medium onions, finely chopped
    • 2 lbs plum tomatoes, ripened and roughly chopped
    • 2 cups vegetable stock
    • 1/2 cup dry white wine
    • 1/2 cup fresh basil, shredded and loosely packed
    • Optional:  heavy cream 2 table spoons
    • salt & freshly ground black pepper


  1. Heat the oil and butter in a large saucepan until foaming.
    Add the onion and roasted garlic. Cook gently for about 5 minutes, stirring, until the onion is softened but not brown.
    Stir in the chopped tomatoes, then add the stock, white wine and salt and pepper to taste.
    Bring to a boil, then lower the heat, half cover the pan, and simmer gently for 20 minutes, stirring occcasionally.
    Process the soup with the shredded basil in a blender or food processor, add back to pan
    Add the cream and heat through, stirring to a hot eating temp
    Check the consistency and add more stock if necessary, then season with salt and pepper.

Sunday, August 26, 2012


These are they way I remember Snickerdoodles. 

Soft and Chewy Snickerdoodles
Recipe from Cooks Illustrated Cookbook, instructions slightly adapted
1 3/4 cups sugar (12.25 oz), divided
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2 1/2 cups (12.5 oz) all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon table salt*
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter* (not margarine) at room temp
8 tablespoons vegetable shortening
2 large eggs
*if using salted butter, just omit table salt
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.  Combine 1/4 cup sugar and cinnamon in shallow dish and set aside.  Whisk flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt together in medium bowl.
Beat butter, shortening, and remaining 1 1/2 cups sugar together on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3-6 minutes.  Beat in eggs, one at a time, until incorporated, about 30 seconds, scraping down bowl as needed.
Reduce speed of mixer to low and slowly add flour mixture until combined, about 30 seconds.  Give dough final stir to ensure that no flour pockets remain.
Working with 2 tablespoons of dough at a time, roll into balls.  Working in batches, roll dough balls in cinnamon sugar mixture to coat and set on prepared baking sheet spaced 2 inches apart.
Bake 1 sheet at a time until edges of cookies are set and just barely beginning to brown, but centers are still soft and puffy, about 10-12 minutes.  The cookies should look raw between the cracks and seem underdone.  Let cookies cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and let cool to room temperature.  Makes about 2 dozen 3-4 inch cookies.found on ourbestbites